Many people assume that, because I am active in the pro-choice, pro-bodily autonomy movement, I am an atheist. I’m not. God and reproductive justice are not, and should not be, exclusive from each other. In fact, as taboo as it may be, Christian women abort, too. Now, I don’t belong to an organized religion, but I do believe in God. I was brought up as a Catholic. I actually found Catholicism to be detrimental to my faith in God. There has always been something in the Catholic church that has told me “Get out. We don’t want you here”. Some people find peace and love in the Catholic church, pro-choicers included, so I don’t mean to bash Catholics. I just found that the Catholic church was not the most welcoming or loving place for me.
When I got old enough and rebellious enough, I defied my parents’ wishes and just stopped going to church. That was when I started believing in God, ironically enough.
To many people, liberty and God seem like two totally conflicting ideas. I don’t blame them for thinking this. It seems like the loudest believers in God, the loudest Christians in particular, are ready and willing to use God as a weapon against all people who they deem unworthy of respect (all women, people of color, people who aren’t straight, etc). These are the people who will gladly do everything that Jesus wouldn’t do and say that their actions are in the name of God.
However, these people don’t represent all, or even most, believers. Many of us do not agree with the thought that God is a weapon. Many of us are opposed to the idea that God loves a white, cis-man more than a trans woman of color. Many of us are in disagreement with the idea that God should be restricting to our lives. Many of us find God to be liberating and meaningful.
I have found that believing in God has been the most liberating I’ve done in my whole life. When I feel that I’m in touch with God, I feel like I know myself. I feel inspired, alive, and free. I feel loved, even when I’m alone. I feel like I am able to give love, even when I’m exhausted with the downfalls of humanity. Being in touch with, as opposed to just believing in, God has given me such a beautiful perspective on life. I feel encouraged and full of energy.
In this way, my belief in God has boosted my enthusiasm for the pro-choice movement. When I found the reproductive justice movement, I found God’s calling for my life. God’s purpose for our lives isn’t to spend our time hurting people, lying, and gossiping like many anti-choicers do. Instead of hurting, lying, and gossiping, wouldn’t it make more sense that God wants us to fight, with love and passion, for the rights of all people, women included? Isn’t that who God really is?